Richard Engel, NBC News’ chief foreign affairs correspondent, appeared live with the fourth Stryker Brigade as they drove out of Iraq to Kuwait.They are the last American combat troops to leave Iraq. And while 50,000 U.S. service members will remain in Iraq, the exit of combat troops represents the symbolic end to the war there.
Engel has been in Iraq since Aug. 11 and his reporting gave NBC News a nice exclusive at a time when news from the lengthy war in Afghanistan has dominated foreign datelines.
Engel appeared on the Nightly News with Brian Williams tonight (Wednesday) and on MSNBC. He was riding in what has affectionately been dubbed the Bloom Mobile, named after the late David Bloom, who died while covering the Iraq war for NBC News. The vehicle - which enabled Bloom to deliver the first broadcast live from the field at the beginning of the war - is part tank and part satellite truck.
There were frequent video and audio issues during Engel’s reporting, but it nevertheless had a dramatic urgency as combat troops close the door on at least one long war in the Middle East.
“This has been 7 1/2 years in the making,” said Engel.